Yesterday I was released from a virtual prison. Okay, even I can tell I’m being melodramatic. We were quasi-snowed in for 4 1/2 days. So… what with the internet, painting and a comfy bed and healthy snacks as well as the Olympics available at any given moment… Yeah, calling my 4 1/2 days at home “jail” might be an overstatement.
But it was quite a relief when I finally did spring myself from the YFR&ZAR. I drove tenuously down a driveway deeply covered in snow, I slowly traversed the one hundred feet of treacherous lane that leads to the highway… and voila’! the roads were clear and I was free at last, free at last.
What did I do, you ask? I went to my favorite little niche grocery store, had some lunch, did some work, ran some errands and returned home. Where’s the glamour you say? I’m a ranch wife, folks. We don’t really ‘do’ glamour. Yes, this also is an exaggeration.
But glamour isn’t the point anyway. Let me tell you what is.
After Mr Dreamboat got back from the hoosegow, I decided to take a little trip myself. I went crazy. It wasn’t the first trip I’d taken by myself, but it was my least favorite for sure. Since I wasn’t enjoying my vacation from planet earth, I did what I could to return from the land of Odd, and one of those things included therapy.
I contend that everyone needs therapy. Especially those people who insist that they do not. I can still remember one of my first assignments from my therapist. Probably because it was my favorite. She said, for the whole week ahead of you, don’t do anything you don’t want to do.
I was flummoxed. How does a wife and mother get away with such scandalous behavior? What about the dust bunnies? There are ALWAYS dust bunnies to be dealt with.
She brushed off my concerns, saying if the dust bunnies became an overwhelming burden, then it was time to deal with them. But if I didn’t want to make dinner, I shouldn’t make dinner. If I didn’t want to go out, I shouldn’t go out. I was supposed to listen to my internal desires and respond lovingly to them.
I was giddy! It is not in my personality to do that sort of thing. So as an assignment? From a professional? WooHoooooooo!
And it wasn’t as easy as you’d think. As a matter of fact, week after week I was given the same assignment and I never really did master it. I’m pretty good at stuff. I maybe learn things slower than some people, but once I get my head wrapped around a new skill, I’m unstoppable. But this one remains a challenge. You’d be surprised.
Yesterday when I went out, the primary goal may have been to replenish the household supply of Nutella, sure. But the secondary goal was to take myself out on a date, to spend the afternoon doing nothing but what I wanted to do. And it worked. Nailed it!
If you’re like me, and I like to believe to some degree you are, this might seem a little silly, a little self indulgent, a smidge ridiculous. And you’d be wrong. Taking the time to listen to yourself, take time alone and do exactly what you want to do is really quite necessary. If you think about it, how can you really know someone else if you never get to know yourself?
A minimum of once a week. This is what I’m telling you has your Play Therapist. MINIMUM. You’ll be surprised at how much more you get done. You’ll be delighted to see how much happier you are when you’re doing the obligatory things. You’ll be thrilled to see how much happier you are to grant other people’s wishes, when your own are being afforded.
Take a play date. Go on. Release yourself from your mental prison. Doctor’s orders.